National Parks in Paraguay

Cerro Cora National Park

This national park is near Brazil in the Amambay Region. The large area of hills, valleys, and rainforest land is the largest protected area in the country and the park was established in 1976, protecting not only the land in the area, but the history and culture of the region, where there are several historical monuments commemorating the final battle in the Paraguayan War in March of 1870.

The national park not only commemorates the Paraguayan War, but it also is home to ancient rock paintings that appear to be Celtic in style and date back to 1300 BC as well as remnants from the Pai Tavy Tera group of indigenous Paraguayan people.

Nacunday National Park

This park is quite small, encompassing only 20 square kilometers, but the variety of flora and fauna make it worth the trip. One of the best reasons to visit this small park is the Salto Nacunday, a waterfall that falls about 40 meters near the mouth of the Nacunday River. The river is an important part of the area, providing water and recreation for the Mbya Guarani villages that are nearby.

The park was created to protect this water supply, and it also helped protect the vegetation in the area, too. Most of the flora includes tall trees, like the cedar and palmito. The park also houses ferns and orchids that contribute to the sub-tropical feel of the area. Tourists get to not only enjoy the water and vegetation, but they usually see several varieties of fish in the river along with reptiles, mammals, vibrant birds, and rodents that make the park their home.

San Rafael National Park

Like much of South America, the San Rafael National Park is suffering the effects of deforestation. This park really is not an official National Park, but it an area of the country that many are fighting to preserve. This area is important because it is a large area of Atlantic forest with fertile soil and many developers want to turn it into commercial farm land. If you do visit Paraguay, this area is important to see because it may not be around much longer.

The area is home to unique species of plants and animals like Capybara, Speckled Crake, Azara’s Fox, and Chaco Spiny Lizard to name a few of the over 700 different species.

Caazapa National Park

This is another large park in the country that houses an amazing forest and an abundance of wildlife. While many people might think that Paraguay is home to jungles, it is more of a quiet forest where the smaller creatures are easier to seek and find. This national park has rangers who are there to help with visitors’ needs. Some of the most memorable sightings include hummingbirds, butterflies, and toucans. Most of this area is undeveloped and some of the best scenery includes the mountains that lie to the north of the park. There are still some indigenous people living in the Caazapa region and many tourists get to interact with them when visiting.

Iguazu Falls

This may not be a true National Park, but the falls have been named one of the Seven Wonders of the Natural World. The falls share a border with Paraguay, Brazil, and Argentina and they are truly a sight to see. The falls are located where the Iguazu River meets the Parana River at the Parana Plateau. Tourists in Paraguay can visit the falls at Ciudad de Este and they can see the two cities in Brazil and Argentina. These falls are much larger than Niagara Falls in New York and Canada and they are surrounded by significantly more interactive visitors’ centers that allow the visitors to get extremely close to the falls. While visiting the falls, visitors often see subtropical creatures like caimans, toucans, spotted jaguars, and spectacular butterflies.

Parque Nacional Ybycui

This national park is one of the last untouched places to enjoy nature in the Acension area of Paraguay. There are very few people who live in this region, but there is also a national park with highly memorable hikes that end at a few different saltos, like Salto Mino and Salto Guarani with waterfalls and swimming holes. This area also includes a well called Pozo Tatacua that has a depth that has yet to be measured.

There are also several ruins from the Paraguayan War, like munitions made in Minas Cue and La Rosada. While visiting Ybycui, tourists can also visit the home of Bernardino Caballero and the School Farm Mamorei where the signs truly point to taking care of the green spaces we have left to care for. The fact that Paraguay is a quiet country that much of the world knows nothing about makes it easier to protect the nature that makes the country so special.